As I sat in the sunny camping fields of 2000Trees on Sunday morning watching abandoned tents roll along in the wind, I was filled with a deep sense of absence as well as contentment. Over the course of the weekend, I’d had experienced all the highs and lows of a festival but, at Trees, those highs were so much more vivid. The site was it’s own kingdom with all the stages, food stands and camping all together in a moderate distance. They let you take your own drinks into the festival, took good care of everyone and put on a cracking silent disco after the impeccable line-ups had played. This is a land I home to return to again and again, even if they do decide to start inconveniently on a Thursday (meaning I didn’t get chance to enjoy all three days) and if there needed to be a few more toilets to end the queues that existed constantly throughout the weekend.
On Friday afternoon, once tents had been put up among the already busy camping suburbia, we found ourselves being swept up in the joyous crowds congregated for Skinny Lister. They brought the sun out as they twirled and whirled across the stage with more energy than I could build up the effort to imagine, bringing along with them a flagon which was benevolently shared with those joining in at the barrier.
Following them was the the saintly Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes who provided the most stirring set of the weekend. Carter takes care of his fans like no frontman I’ve had the pleasure of seeing before – he helped find phones and bumbags whilst demonstrating his support for the very worthy cause Safe Gigs For Women. I feel confident that his tour later this year will be an experience for anyone going.
The Wonder Years then poured wonder into the eyes of all those watching with their fun punk pop before Nothing But Thieves put on a powerful performance that drew in a strong crowd. It’s no surprise though considering their recent rise to the top of everyone’s playlists. At midnight a break was taken from the silent disco for a retreat into the woods for a magical set from Orchards, proving another reason Trees is so special – the intimate performances from artists at all times of the night.
Saturday was kicked off by one of our favourite artists of the weekend at the Neu tent: Soeur. With dynamic dual front vocals and an intense level of enthusiasm, they shaked off any tired eyes or hangovers in the audience and left everyone with a taste for more. Afterwards, we were glad to be seeing Milk Teeth again after their rousing Slam Dunk performance and they definitely did not fall short of our expectations.
Returning to the Neu stage saw Peaness trick their audience with shy personas before taking them complete surprise with their confident, catchy and cheery indie tracks that made me surprised they’re not more well known. Running over to the main stage we caught Spring King belt out a very sweaty set in the heat. Surprisingly, they initially only drew a small crowd despite their recent massive debut and their wild dominance on stage but, as the music began to buldge at the seams, the crowd began to build.
We then found our self soaking up the wild exploits of Get Inuit. As frontman Jamie Glass’s performance was as untamed as it was humorous and down to earth, he knows where he is but he knows where he wants to go and, mixing his prescene with that unruly sound, he sure as hell is going to get there. Then, with Slotface cancelled, I ended up witness just why The Front Bottoms are touring with such a major band as Blink 182. Slaves followed up with the ultimate set of the weekend. Isaac hammered out all of their best tracks as Laurie made sure to cover every square foot of the stage, flitting around as he ripped his guitar to shreds. In other words, it was the only way to end a festival.